Welcome to SdKfz 251.com    
A website featuring the SdKfz 251 Schutzenpanzerwagen German halftrack and the post war
                                                  Czech OT-810
video 4
General Characteristics
Sd.Kfz.251  (1939-45)  German halftrack                                           OT-810 (1955-60's) Czech halftrack
Crew: 12                                 Armor:  6-12.5 mm   (.024 - .57 in)            Crew: 12                               Armor:?
Length:  5.8m,  19ft 3 in        Powerplant: Maybach 6-cyl 100HP          Length: 5.7m, 18.7 ft           Engine: Tatra V-8 120hp
 Width:  2.1m,  6ft  10.7 in      Road Speed: 52.5 km/h, 32.5 mph           Width:   2.1m,   6.9 ft           Diesel 4 stroke, air
cooled
Height: 1.75m,  5ft 8.9 in       Power/weight  12.8hp/tonne                   Height: 1.8m,    6.2ft           Speed: 45km - 28mph
Range:  300km,  186 mi                                                                             Weight: 9000 kg, 8.9 tons  Range: on roads 372
miles

The Sd.Kfz.251 German halftrack was an armoured fighting vehicle built by Germany during World War II. The early
production models of this vehicle we issued to the 1st Panzer Division in 1939. There were four main models (A - D),
with many variations. The initial idea was for a vehicle that could be used to transport a squad of troops to the
battlefield protected from enemy fire. The open top meant that the crew was still vulnerable.

The first two models were produced in small numbers. The C variant has a larger production run, but was a quite
complex vehicle to build, involving many angled plates that gave reasonable protection from small arms fire. The D
variation utilised a much simpler design, and can be easily recognized by its single piece sloping rear (with flat
doors).

Although designed for cross country work, the German halftrack had some limitations as the front wheels were not
powered.

The standard personnel carrier version was equipped with a 7.92mm MG34 or MG42 machine gun mounted at the
front of the open compartment, above and behind the driver.

Variants of this German halftrack were produced for specialized purposes, including anti-aircraft guns, rocket
launching ( with 3 rockets fitted on either side of the vehicle) as well as a version with an infra-red search light
used to spot potential targets for associated Panther tanks equipped with infra-red detectors.

There were 23 official variants of the German halftrack, and sundry unofficial variants. Each variant is identified by a
suffix to the model number. There was however some overlap in the variant numbers.

* SdKfz 251/1 - standard company machine                                                   * SdKfz 251/9   - Equipped with 75mm L/24 gun

* SdKfz 251/1 - Rocket Launcher                                                                     * SdKfz 251/10 - Equipped with 37mm Pak 36

* SdKfz 251/1 - Falke Infrared detection equipment                                     * SdKfz 251/11 - Telephone line layer

* SdKfz 251/2 - 80mm Mortar Carrier                                                               * SdKfz 251/12, 13, 14, 15 - specialty artillery
veh.

* SdKfz 251/3 - Communications vehicle                                                        * SdKfz 251/16 - Flammpanzerwagen

* SdKfz 251/4 - Infantry tractor for towing guns                                            * SdKfz 251/17 - 20mm or 30mm Flak

* SdKfz 251/5 - Assault engineer vehicle                                                       * SdKfz 251/18 - armored artillery observation

* SdKfz 251/6 -  Command version                                                                  * SdKfz 251/19 - telephone exchange vehicle

* SdKfz 251/7 - Pionierpanzerwagen                                                               * SdKfz 251/20 - Infrared searchlight

* Sd.Kfz.251/8 -  Armoured ambulance                                                           * SdKfz 251/21 - Flakpanzerwagen, 3 15mm
MGs

* SdKfz 251/22 - 75mm Pak 40

The Czech OT-810, cousin of the SdKfz 251

The Czech army, desiring an army personnel carrier (the Soviets had none) utilized captured and abandoned
German SdKfz 251s for their post-war armed forces. Eventually these left over vehicles wore out and a replacement
vehicle, the OT-810 was created to replace it, utilizing a similar design and constructed by Tatra and Skoda, both of
whom were involved in the original construction of Wehrmacht SdKfz 251s. Approximately 2,400 OT-810s were built
and used by the Czech armed forces well into the 1980s. It is said that several hundred survive today around the
globe, most being destroyed due to disarmament agreements with NATO.

The OT-810 is very similar in size, weight, and performance to the SdKfz 251. The biggest differences was the use of
an eight cyl. Tatra air cooled diesel engine that replaced the underpowered 6 cyl. German Maybach gas engine. The
hood of the OT-810 is somewhat larger to accommodate the larger engine. The Czechs also enclosed the OT-810  
with hatches, partially to help protect the occupants from shrapnel and somewhat from exposure to radiation and
gas.

While it is said that there are only about 13 operational Sdkfz 251s around the world, all in private collections, there
are quite a few OT-810s in Europe and the USA, many in use by WWII reenactors. This website has abundant photos
of these in the next few pages. Enjoy.

Halftrack links:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sdkfz_251
http://www.geocities.com/motorcity/pit/3515/251/
http://www.panzermuseum.com/home/edition/special-vehicles-and-exhibits.html
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x8xEvw3ByC4
Photos of the SdKfz 251 and post war Czech OT-810
Purpose of www.sdkfz251.com
This website is designed to share information on the
German WWII SdKfz 251 halftrack and its sibling, the
post war Czech OT-810 halftrack.  This will primarily be
done by displaying photos from WWII, the post war
period, and from the present, including many
reenactment photos. This site is designed solely for the
enjoyment of those interested in this topic.
The SdKfz 251 was one of the first vehicles of its type,
transporting Panzer Grenadiers into battle in support of
armor or as a stand alone mobile fighting vehicle. All
armored carriers since owe their lineage to it.
German WWII reenacting using an OT-810
I became personally interested in the SdKfz 251 when I joined the 7th Kompanie
Grossdeutschland living history unit, their  website address  is

www.grossdeutschland.com.
 I purchased an OT-810 halftrack from a collection in
Austria. It is now being restored to more closely resemble a WWII SdKfz 251. See photos
on page V. My SPW is again in the shop, this time to change the armour and make it look
like a D model. I will post pictures as this work is performed. See the Panzer Fusilier
Regiment GD website (UK)
 http://www.gd-uk.org
This site will be updated as new photos of SdKfz 251s are posted.

If you are interested in purchasing an OT-810 contact  Duncan Nicholson of
http://www.tanksforsale.co.uk in England. I bought mine unit from him and he is excellent
to deal with.

OT-810 parts and user manuals are available for sale, see page 8.
Also OT-810 operators manuals in English.
Many photos are from various sources on the web, collected long before I had any idea I
would post them on a website.  In the future I will strive to give appropriate credit and will
add links. see a converted OT-810 in a WWII reenactment film from 4/08
http://youtube.com/watch?v=AXivPvoOPjY
See photos of German WWII
reenactments including 7th
Kompanie Grossdeutschland
Webmaster's contact information: admin@sdkfz251.com
The information on this website is for the personal enjoyment of those who are
interested in German halftracks and German WWII reenacting. This website is strictly
non political. Be sure to see the Grossdeutschland website.
SdKfz 251
OT-810
OT-810 conversion interior
SdKfz 251 interior
OT-810 Conversion
OT-810 conversion interior
Video 1
Video 2
Video 3
Three recent reenactment videos using
a converted OT-810. GD-USA
Video 4